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TR Relic Dug Artifacts Question

Article about: Just an odd observation I've been wondering about of late. So many excavated German badges,equipment, etc. that I've run across are all showing the same unusual thing-the Swastika has been r

  1. #1

    Default TR Relic Dug Artifacts Question

    Just an odd observation I've been wondering about of late. So many excavated German badges,equipment, etc. that I've run across are all showing the same unusual thing-the Swastika has been removed. Most of the diggers that I've asked this all claim total ignorance and pretend that "it must have rotted off" or "I found it that way", when sadly, it's glaringly obvious that it has just recently been snapped off with still bright and clean edges. Is there some strange "tradition" or something that makes some diggers Still de-Nazify artifacts even Today-70 years or more later, when it's a well known fact that it certainly lowers the relic's value and desirability, to do such a thing to something you've recovered? Personally, I would not want such an object in my collection-but that's just me.
    If pressed for an explanation, some of them will eventually trot out the old "The Germans did it themselves when they disposed of it before they gave themselves up and were captured.", which, is, of course, nonsense. Somehow, I doubt very much if some German machine-gunner was sitting around in a dug-out thinking of surrendering to the dreaded Red Army across the way and was worried too overly much about a miniscule swastika on some obscure piece of equipment or some such enough to deface it before he tossed it into the rubble or a fire somewhere. I can fully understand a Russian soldier needing a belt and grabbing one off of a German prisoner or corpse and chipping off the swastika so that he could wear it without his Sargent screaming at him when he saw it, but 70 years later, digging a German Infantry Assault badge from out of a 5 foot deep mud hole and cleaning it up to sell for a few bucks, I can't quite see why someone at this age and era would deliberately take a pair of pliers to the Swastika and snap it off so he can sell it for less money. Of course, then again, I've been known to be baffled by less mundane things as well....
    William

    "Much that once was, is lost. For none now live who remember it."

  2. #2
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    Default Re: TR Relic Dug Artifacts Question

    Im wondering if it could be something to do with selling items on E-bay

  3. #3

    Default Re: TR Relic Dug Artifacts Question

    I know that a lot of TR badges, awards, buckles etc were de-nazified once the soldiers were captured and held in allied POW camps as part of their re-educaton and de-militarisation programme. A lot of finds at former POW camps tend to have the swaz removed.

    Also belt buckles and other items were salvaged and reused by locals after the war and they would certainly have wnated to remove the swaz from any item they reused. I have army belt buckle in my collection that was denazified by a French farmer and used for many years. As for someone doing it now, I can see no reason why anyone would wish to as it significantly reduces it value.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: TR Relic Dug Artifacts Question

    Partisans also "de nazified" especially belt buckles. I can for sure not imagine that any digger would do this. I don't know of any. I doubt somehow that your questions have been answered by the diggers themselves. Most likely somebody pretending to be a digger, but could not come up with a better explanation. If the Swas was removed not long ago, i can't say why. There is no tradition among diggers to do this. Trust me on this one Wagriff.

  5. #5

    Default Re: TR Relic Dug Artifacts Question

    i find it amazing that on ebay there are often belt buckles claiming a bullet round has gone right through the swastika area...more likely a hammer and punch!

  6. #6

    Default Re: TR Relic Dug Artifacts Question

    Most are ment to be sold on ebay, because items with swas are removed!
    Even without swas, they often remove ad's...
    I know for sure that some items, found a "Top Hat" facilty's near Antwerp,had swas, others didn't.
    I think items took by Western allieds , as a souvenir,would have stand a greater chance to keep theyre swas , then items kept by theyre owners at home or on them self.
    |<
    Always looking for Belgian Congo stuff!
    cheers
    |<ris

  7. #7

    Default Re: TR Relic Dug Artifacts Question

    I am thinking that maybe the eBay aspect of selling dug relics might be on the right track here. Of course, I understand the "de-nazify" aspect of post war useage and all, of things like belt buckles, etc., but what has me on the wondering side are the Dug battlefield relics so often encountered mutilated with fresh appearing bits missing and almost always the "offensive swastika" being removed. It is most difficult to imagine a digger brushing dirt off of a wound badge he's just spent the day digging out of a collapsed bunker somewhere in the Russian countryside mud and thinking "Hmm...I can get 50 bucks for this, so I think I'll chisel off the swastika and get 5 dollars instead." But, apparently, they seem to be doing just That in many cases. Ebay seems to be almost the only plausible explanation for such a thing.
    William

    "Much that once was, is lost. For none now live who remember it."

  8. #8
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    Default Re: TR Relic Dug Artifacts Question

    Must admit i have never heard of or seen any diggers doing anything like this why would they , they all know the value of items so i can't see any reason for it . Can you post some examples of where this has been done ?
    The gates of hell were opened and we accepted the invitation to enter" 26/880 Lance Sgt, Edward Dyke. 26th Bn Northumberland Fusiliers , ( 3rd Tyneside Irish )

    1st July 1916

    Thought shall be the harder , heart the keener,
    Courage the greater as our strength faileth.
    Here lies our leader ,in the dust of his greatness.
    Who leaves him now , be damned forever.
    We who are old now shall not leave this Battle,
    But lie at his feet , in the dust with our leader

    House Carles at the Battle of Hastings

  9. #9
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    Default Re: TR Relic Dug Artifacts Question

    Quote by Paul E View Post
    Must admit i have never heard of or seen any diggers doing anything like this why would they , they all know the value of items so i can't see any reason for it . Can you post some examples of where this has been done ?
    That would make sense. I am a little confused by this. Maybe i do not completely understand what you are saying William, but how can it useful to remove a swas from a item and put it on ebay? Relics can get damaged from digging of course.

  10. #10

    Default Re: TR Relic Dug Artifacts Question

    The next time I run into such a relic, I'll have to swipe the photo and post it here. All I know is that it happens now way too often to be a coincidence. One would think that Other parts would be broken or missing from dug relics, but it almost always seems to be the swastika! Strange, for sure!
    William

    "Much that once was, is lost. For none now live who remember it."

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